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Monday, January 09, 2012

Mayocoba Beans in Acorn Squash Puree with Okra Brown Rice



Pinto, Black Turtle, Red Kidney, Black-eyed, Navy, Garbanzo, Adzuki, Cannellini, Lima, Fava, Hyacinth... we've been incorporating so many bean varieties into our diet over the years, just what we are able to find at the local markets, nothing exotic.

And, for the first time, a couple of weeks ago, I noticed the Mayocoba or Peruano beans at the grocery store, and promptly bought some to try. Turns out there was some controversy over these beans regarding patents.


These yellow-tinged off-white Peruano or Mayocoba beans are as large as pinto beans. At first, I thought they might taste much like cannellini or navy beans. But, I was pleasantly surprised to taste the rich flavor and meatier feel, which makes for good refried beans.

I soaked it overnight, and cooked it on stovetop, with some salt and brown sugar, till soft and firm but not mushy - about 30-40 minutes for 1½ cups of dry beans in 4 cups water. For refried beans, I prefer to pressure cook it till mushy.

Sometimes, I find it handy to cook and puree the squashes and add them to soups/curries/stews as a base/gravy. I had some acorn squash purée handy which I used here. But, tomato purée or even roasted red bell pepper purée, or a combination of them might taste fine too.

Ingredients
For the Mayocoba beans:
1 cup acorn squash purée
1 cup cooked Mayocoba beans
1 small yellow onion diced finely
1 small carrot, shipped (optional)
1 tsp Madras Curry powder
1 tsp cayenne pepper powder
1 tsp brown sugar
salt to taste
cilantro for garnish
water as needed

Sauté the onions, add the beans and the rest of the ingredients, cover and simmer till flavors meld, garnish and serve warm with bread or rice.

For the Okra Brown Rice:
2 cups cooked brown rice
1 small red or yellow onion, diced
1 tsp minced garlic
6 medium okras cut on a bias to 1-inch pieces
1 small carrot chopped
Spice Mix: 1 tsp cumin powder, 2 tsp coriander powder, 1 tsp ground/crushed oregano, 1 tsp cayenne pepper, 1 tsp paprika powder, 2 tsp dried parsley
salt to taste
1 Tbsp olive oil or hazelnut oil or even coconut oil for a strong tropical flavor

Combine the spice mix, stir well and store in an airtight container. Use as much as needed for flavoring the rice.

Heat the oil in a pan, sauté the onions, add the garlic, a tablespoon of spice mix, okra and stir fry till aromatic; add the cooked brown rice, stir well, adjust seasoning to taste. Garnish and serve warm.



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